There are now very few people in the UK that have not heard about the current HGV driver shortage that is hitting supply chains.
In September, many of us may have even sat in queues for fuel following press coverage warning of fuel shortages as a result of this lack of HGV drivers (which was denied by ministers), and we have likely all seen the headlines on food and Christmas gift shortages on the horizon.
According to industry bodies, there is currently a shortfall of around 100,000 drivers, blamed on a number of factors, including Brexit, the pandemic, changes to tax and an extensive backlog of HGV driver tests. Experts have, however, stated that the situation is improving, and with freight experts such as Grace providing support and services to keep supply chains moving, there is light at the end of the tunnel for those wishing to import and export.
We take a look at some key industry updates and news below which explore how the industry is coping, and what is being done to support supply chains:
Logjam at Felixstowe
Handling more than 36% of the UK’s freight container traffic, the Port of Felixstowe has been experiencing a logjam of shipping containers in recent weeks. This has been blamed partly on the pre-Christmas busy period but also on haulage shortages. Despite this, however, a spokesperson has said that the situation seems to be improving.
Post-Brexit import controls
It was announced in September, that there would be another delay in implementing post-Brexit import controls for goods entering Great Britain from the EU. Checks for this will instead be implemented in phases over the next year, rather than imposing them at a time when supply chains are under strain. Full customs declarations and controls will come into force from 1st January 2022, with safety and security declarations being introduced from 1st July 2022.
Joining the CPTPP
Whilst not specifically related to the HGV shortage, the announcement that the UK has commenced talks to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) is a very positive step for the freight industry. The partnership will allow the UK to build strong links with some of the world’s fastest growing economies.
Supporting supply chains
Here at Grace Overseas, we have been supporting our customers through the HGV driver shortage; providing a world-class service with minimal disruption. Not only do we offer road freight and tanker services, but sea freight and air freight services also, ensuring that goods are able to reach their destination on time.
Speak to our team today to find out more about our freight forwarding services.